Review: “Eddie the Eagle” (2016)

Director: Dexter Fletcher

Featuring: Hugh Jackman, Taron Egerton, Christopher Walken and Jim Broadbent

Taron Egerton and Hugh Jackman are both excellent in this inspired by a true story “Eddie the Eagle”, the English ski jumper who made it to the 1988 Winter Olympics and made a huge impression there and at home.

Its great seeing these two actors fresh from box office success in their respective comic book films and make a smallish charming drama in the vein of, yes, “Cool Runnings” (1993), directed by the actor turned accomplished director Dexter Fletcher.

The film itself takes Michael “Eddie” Edwards played by Taron Egerton who as a young boy had an injury that left him immobile and once he overcame this dreamed of becoming an Olympian of any sort. Chasing his dream leads him to attempt to became the second ski jumper to represent he UK in the Winter Olympics.

Hugh Jackman plays a fictionalised washed up American ex jumper who left his own coach (played by an excellent Christopher Walken) because of his huge ego. What’s interesting is the way both Eddie and his coach come together to compete while not really agreeing on the way Eddie should compete at the upcoming Olympics.

This story itself is highly fictionalised but reflects the small industry that exists in the UK, almost every year there are similar stories that are turned into semi-real films such as “The Full Monty” (1997), “Calendar Girls (2003), Quartet (2012) and many more that become hits in their homeland and travel extremely well. Eddie probably wont travel that well but with the addition of Jackman does give it wider appeal.

Dexter Fletcher who came to prominence as an actor has great pedigree as a director and counts Guy Ritchie and Matthew Vaughn as mates; this is his first film using any real kind of special effects and bona fide superstars. He takes the story and moulds it into a great feel good film that I highly recommend to all.

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